A former Deputy Health Minister, Rojo Mettle Nunoo, has said about 1,400 personnel had already been shortlisted and ready to be recruited as staff of the University of Ghana Medical Centre before the John Mahama administration was kicked out of office.
According to him, a total of 28,000 applied to work for the Centre, out of which 1,400 were selected.
The facility, which has its first phase completed and ready to commence operations, has been dormant many months after former President John Mahama inaugurated the 217 million dollar facility.
[contextly_sidebar id=”rHElBvqzAE4W5CNSyn3XeKcrRyix1jm8″]There is currently a tussle between the University of Ghana and the Ministry of Health as to who should manage the centre.
Whereas the University believes processes leading to the construction of the facility gives it a direct oversight role of the Medical Centre, the current Ministry of Health under the Akufo-Addo government thinks otherwise.
The seeming impasse between the two institutions had led to the facility not being used.
A Deputy Minister of Health, Kingsley Aboagye Gyedu, had earlier said government currently needs about $6 million to make the facility operational, and an additional $50 million to complete the phase two of the project.
But speaking on Eyewitness News on Friday, Mr. Nunoo said the previous government had an adequate plan in place on the way forward for the Centre, adding that all was set for the facility to be operational before the NDC left office.
“Government will pay salaries so we got the Public Service Commission to agree to the establishment of the hospital and 28,000 people applied to be staff of the hospital. We did interviews and the first round of over 1,400 or so people were identified and appointment letters were going to be given. The Fair Wages Commission had also agreed with the salary structure of the hospital and given approval.”
“The Ministry of Finance approved and gave authorization for the university to go ahead and issue appointment letters to the 1,400 or so people who were supposed to be engaged at the level of consultants, specialists, nurses, biomedical engineers, laboratory technicians, sanitary people, I mean everything had been put in place,” he noted.
The former Deputy Health Minister further noted that, what was required was for government to guarantee that while “we are going through all these processes, our water, electricity and utilities will be underwritten against a payment plan for us to service any facility that government gives us.”
He said with this understanding, what was left was for the Ministry of Health was to acquire a loan facility to enable them “complete some empty shell spaces, fully equip the hospital, buy essential drugs and consumables to run the hospital, and also to do further training of staff required to run the hospital.”
He said the plan was that after such processes were completed; they will begin treating few patients and continue expanding until the Medical Centre run at 100 percent capacity.
“So it’s not like we had no plan,” he added.
Stop interfering in UG Medical Centre affairs – Minority to gov’t
The Minority in Parliament has asked government to stop interfering in the affairs of the University of Ghana Medical Centre.
The Minority in a statement said it found it unfortunate, government’s moves to take over the facility since UG had signed an agreement with the Health Ministry, to entrust full ownership of the medical centre to the school.
“…The Minority regards as unfortunate the overt gestures of the Minister of Health to derail well thought out plans by several governments over the years and to claim and wrestle ownership of the Hospital from the University of Ghana. The latter has the mandate to produce quality health professionals for health care delivery and to prosecute research to address national health challenges which ultimately would lead to improved health security for the nation,” the Minority said in the statement.
By: Godwin Akweiteh Allotey/citifmonline.com/Ghana